Authorities arrested an Ohio man last week on suspicion of planning an attack on a synagogue in the Toledo area, Justice Department officials said Monday.
Investigators took 21-year-old Damon Joseph, of Holland, Ohio, into custody on Friday to face one count of attempting to provide material support to ISIS, authorities said in a news release.
“He planned to carry out an attack at a Toledo-area synagogue in the name of ISIS and hoped that it would cause fear and result in a maximum number of casualties,” Assistant Attorney General John Demers said.
Joseph caught investigators’ attention earlier in the year while posting photos of knives and firearms on social media, according to authorities. He also posted a photo that had originally been distributed by ISIS’ media wing, Justice Department officials said.
He told undercover agents he was a supporter of ISIS and, in September, made videos that he sent to an undercover agent in the hopes the footage would be used to recruit people to join the militant organization, authorities said.
Several times, he told undercover investigators that he supported “martyrdom operations,” according to investigators.
“In a matter of months, Damon Joseph progressed from radicalized, virtual jihadist to attack planner,” FBI acting special agent in charge Jeff Fortunato said.
On Oct. 30, three days after a man killed 11 people in an attack inside the Tree of Life Congregation Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Joseph expressed admiration for the shooter while speaking with an undercover agent.
“I can see myself carrying out this type of operation inshallah,” he said, according to court records. “They wouldn’t even expect (an attack) in my area…”
Joseph said several times in the intervening weeks that he wanted to participate in an attack on behalf of ISIS and, on Dec. 2, forwarded a plan for his attack to an undercover agent, court records showed. Joseph didn’t consider his plan “a martyrdom operation,” authorities said, because he had a plan for his escape.
Two days later, Joseph told the agent he was choosing between two synagogues to target and that the decision would depend on “which one will have the most people, what time and what day,” court records showed.
“Go big or go home,” Joseph told the undercover agent, officials said.
Joseph met with the agent on Wednesday and provided him with notes about firearms he wanted ahead of the attack, including AR-15s, an AK-47, Glocks and ammunition, court records showed.
He decided on which synagogue he planned to attack Thursday, telling an undercover agent that he “wanted to kill a rabbi,” officials said. The agent later told Joseph that he had the rifles Joseph wanted for the attack -- a pair of AR-15-type weapons.
Authorities arrested Joseph after he took possession of the bag, officials said.
“The charges describe a calculated man fueled by an ideology of hatred and intent on killing innocent people,” said Justin Herdman, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “This man spent months planning a violent terrorist attack on behalf of ISIS.”
Authorities continue to investigate the case.
Officials said during the short appearance, the judge revoked 34-year-old Michael Ray McLellan's bond and said he could face the death penalty in the case.According to officials, McLellan is due in court again later in the day regarding a different criminal case he faces.
After following more than 850 leads and conducting nearly 500 interviews, the FBI and the Lumberton police arrested and charged McLellan in connection with Aguilar's abduction and death.Agents announced early Saturday morning that McLellan had been charged and was being held at the time of his arrest in law enforcement custody on charges unrelated to Aguilar's case.
The annual "Baby It's Cold Outside" controversy didn’t last for too long at a Bay Area radio station.
KGO reported that adult contemporary radio station 96.5 KOIT in the San Francisco Bay Area removed the 1944 song from its rotation on Dec. 4. Written by the late “Guys and Dolls” writer Frank Loesser, the duet, typically performed by a male and female singer, contains lyrics like, “Say, what’s in this drink?” and “I simply must go,” followed by the woman singing “The answer is no.”
The decision followed that of WDOK in Cleveland, which announced Nov. 27 it was no longer playing the song.
“I do realize that when the song was written in 1944, it was a different time, but now while reading it, it seems very manipulative and wrong,” station host Glenn Anderson said in a blog post. “The world we live in is extra sensitive now, and people get easily offended, but in a world where #MeToo has finally given women the voice they deserve, the song has no place.”
KOIT’s decision wasn’t final, however. The same day the song was pulled, the station invited listeners to weigh in on the change via a poll on its website.
“We received more complaints on the song than any other song ever played in the history of the radio station,” KOIT program director Brian Figula told KGO Dec. 4.
Listener response led the station to put “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” back in rotation.
“KOIT’s listeners have spoken, and the overwhelming message is they do want to hear ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ on our station, as they have throughout the years,” Figula said in a statement Monday. “More than seven out of every 10 listeners who responded said although some lyrics of the song may reflect a different era and a different sensibility than today, still they love the tradition and history of the song, and want to hear it as part of their holiday season.
“At KOIT, we always listen carefully when our listeners take time to comment. In this case, it was very obvious what they wanted us to do.”
According to Loesser’s daughter Susan Loesser, the song, taken in the context of the time it was written, does not imply date rape.
“I think my father would be furious at that,” she told NBC News. “People used to say, ‘What’s in this drink?’ as a joke. You know, this drink is going straight to my head so what’s in this drink? Back then it didn’t mean, ‘You drugged me.’”
A disturbing video of a tussle between police and a New York woman trying to hold onto her 1-year-old baby as she sat on the floor at a Brooklyn food assistance center, WPIX reported.
The Friday arrest of Jazmine Headley, 23, caught on cellphone video, has sparked anger and calls for an investigation, while officials with the New York Police Department are calling the video “troubling,” WABC reported.
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams called for all charges against Headley to be dropped, the television station reported.
“The department endangered the child, not the mother,” Adams said at a news conference Monday. “Clearly our police department, the most well-trained department in the country, should be able to de-escalate a situation with a baby and the mother. I think the best way of telling her she could not sit on the floor was to get her a chair.”
Headley remains in custody and faces charges that include acting in a manner injurious to a child and resisting arrest. The child is in the care of a family member, WCBS reported.
According to Headley’s mother, Jacqueline Jenkins, her daughter went to the Human Resources Administration building in Brooklyn. Jenkins said Headley was going to ask for day care vouchers for her son so she could work as a cleaner, WABC reported.
The building was crowded and there were no chairs, so Headley sat on the floor with her son, WPIX reported.
Officers were called after Headley allegedly refused to leave, despite requests from HRA peace officers, police said.
Headley "was then informed by police numerous times to leave the location, and she refused," WPIX reported.
Officers forcibly removed Headley’s baby and handcuffed her, according to the video.
The footage is "hard to watch,” City Council Speaker Corey Johnson told WPIX.
"I was devastated to see something like that happen to my daughter and grandson, and how this officer yanking on my grandson to get him out of my daughter's arms," Jenkins told WABC.
A California man is accused of catching 19 trout he planned to let die on the grass before tossing them back into a Sacramento pond, KCRA reported.
Igor Gasur, who has a lifetime fishing license ban, was arrested Saturday on suspicion of poaching, probation violation and various Fish and Wildlife violations, according to the Fulton El Camino Park Police Department.
"Just for clarification, he wasn't catching to keep or eat. Per his own statement, he was catching them, letting them die in the grass and planned to throw the dead fish back in the pond," KCRA reported, citing a statement from park police.
Gasur was spotted by authorities fishing at the Howe Park Community Pond after hours, the television station reported. Authorities said they found the fish in his possession.
Gasur is on probation with the Department of Fish and Wildlife, KCRA reported. He is barred from owning or possessing fishing equipment, authorities said.
Police arrested the owner of a liquor store in Memphis, Tennessee, after he had too much to drink, according to court records.
According to the arrest affidavit, Richard Coda, who is the owner of Coda’s Liquor, was drunk and irate inside his business on Dec. 9.
When officers with the Memphis Police Department arrived, they found him behind the counter. Officers said he was shirtless, had slurred speech and could barely stand on his feet. They could also smell alcohol on his breath.
While inside, officers said they saw multiple broken bottles.
For Coda’s safety, police took him to the Memphis Mental Health Institute to detox, however, he was so irate that a nurse refused to treat him, according to the affidavit.
Coda was booked into jail and charged with public intoxication and disorderly conduct.
Iconic actor Kirk Douglas celebrated his 102nd birthday Sunday, and daughter-in-law Catherine Zeta-Jones paid homage with a moving tribute, ETonline reported.
Jones, who is married to Douglas’ son, Michael Douglas, posted a black-and-white video on Instagram that showed the 49-year-old actress’ daughter, Carys Zeta Douglas, playing the piano as a young child (she is now 15) and singing Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful,” ETonline reported. The video included black-and-white photos and videos of Douglas, highlighting his life, People reported.
"Happy 102nd birthday to the most beautiful man. We love you Kirk," Zeta-Jones wrote on Instagram.
Carys also posted on Instagram, posting a photo of her grandfather and writing that “I can’t put into words how much you mean to me.”
Another grandchild, Dylan Douglas, posted a photo on Instagram of Douglas in a boxing pose and wrote, “Happy birthday Pappy 102 years!!! Though you are adored by millions, my love for you is by far the greatest. Love you forever and always,” he wrote.
R&B singer Jacquees has had a year full of buzz -- from his unauthorized but popular remake of Ella Mai’s “Trip” to the release of his debut album “4275.” Though he has attracted a legion of fans, some R&B music lovers have knocked the 24-year-old down a peg after his boastful comments on Instagram over the weekend.
The Shade Room reported that Jacquees, whose real name Rodriquez Jacquees Broadnax, shared a message with his Instagram followers about his dominance of the R&B genre, especially for the folks in “this generation.”
“I just want to let everybody know that I’m the king of R&B right now -- for this generation,” he said in the Sunday post. “I understand who done came and who done did that and that and that, but now it’s my time. Jacquees the king of R&B. I just heard them say it and I been feeling like that.”
The 24-year-old has not made it to the Billboard chart’s top 40 in 2018, but his 2016 single “B.E.D.” spent seven weeks on the charts, peaking at No. 30 on the R&B and hip-hop charts. His most notable song this year has been a remix of Ella Mai’s “Trip,” but the team behind Ella Mai ripped the track from Soundcloud, reportedly due to the singer-songwriter publishing an unauthorized version of the song.
Jacquees’ sentiment on his R&B royalty status was not well-received for the most part on social media Monday, with many pointing out the singer had little evidence of his dominance, especially when compared to singers like Chris Brown.
It wasn’t just music fans who took issue with the singer’s declaration. Actor and singer Tyrese also chimed in. On Instagram Monday, Tyrese called Jacquees out for “trolling” social media users. He cited Chris Brown and Trey Songz as current contenders for the “king” title.
Though the reception was mainly negative, Jacquees’ comments did get support from those who applauded his confidence.
Roger the ripped kangaroo, a kickboxing marsupial who sprang into the public consciousness when a 2015 photo of him crushing a metal bucket went viral, has died, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported. He was 12.
The kangaroo died of natural causes at The Kangaroo Sanctuary in Alice Springs, Australia.
"We have lost our beautiful boy," Chris Barns, the owner of the wildlife sanctuary, said in a statement. "He lived a lovely long life and was loved by millions around the world."
Roger stood 6-foot-7 and weighed nearly 200 pounds.
He was rescued as a 5-month-old joey in 2007 after his mother was killed in a car accident, the BBC reported. Barns removed Roger from his mother’s pouch.
"I rescued him out of his dead mother, 25 kilometers north of Alice Springs, when I was out patrolling the roads checking roadkill," Barns told ABC. "I used to call him Roger Rabbit because he looked like Roger Rabbit with these big ears that flopped over the top. And then that just became Roger as he got older.”
Roger became an internet sensation when images of him crushing a metal bucket between his paws like it was a piece of paper went viral, the BBC reported.
"Roger was as muscular as they come," Barns told the network. "Ever since he was featured on TV and clips went viral, there's been a lot of love and attention for him.”
Roger was buried at The Kangaroo Sanctuary, ABC reported.
Police have charged a pair of middle school students in connection with a false school shooting threat made last week in Maryland, authorities said.
A parent called officials at Aberdeen Middle School on Dec. 3 after seeing a post on social media warning students not to go to school the next day because a student had threatened to shoot it up, police said.
Investigators later determined the threat was not credible and that the student blamed for it never made the threat, officials said.
Police charged an eighth-grade student with making a false statement to a peace officer and charged another with disturbing school operations in connection with the threat, officials said.
“The Aberdeen Police Department encourages students and parents to report threats of violence to our children and schools, as safety is our main concern, however at the same time, false reports or the posting/reposting (of) threats on social media will not be tolerated,” police said in a statement.
Applebee’s is once again offering a $1 cocktail as a new month is underway.
The restaurant chain announced late last month that its December Drink of the Month is the Dollar Jolly.
The vodka-based drink is made with cherry or apple Jolly Rancher mix and is available at participating restaurants for a dollar. It also comes with a Jolly Rancher hard candy on the side.
“We created a drink to help spread the cheer as friends and loved ones gather together during the holidays,” Patrick Kirk, vice president of beverage innovation at Applebee’s, said in a Nov. 30 news release. “The DOLLAR JOLLY embodies the holiday spirit: joy, delight and good times. Oh, and vodka too.”
Although the drink is being offered for $1, prices vary by location.
A Russian woman charged earlier this year with conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation appears to have reached a plea deal with prosecutors, according to reports and court records released Monday.
Maria Butina, a 30-year-old Russian citizen living in Washington D.C., was charged in July with “undertaking activities without officially disclosing the fact that she was acting as an agent of the Russian government,” according to authorities. Butina was charged on July 16 with failing to register as a foreign agent, as required by law, and pleaded not guilty.
In a joint motion filed Monday by Butina's attorneys and prosecutors, officials asked for a hearing to change her plea as soon as Tuesday.
"The parties have resolved this matter, and the Defendant Mariia Butina remains in custody," the motion said.
Butina’s attorney and prosecutors said last month that they were in talks to settle the case, Reuters reported.
Justice Department officials allege that, starting as early as 2015, Butina schmoozed with influential people and organizations in the U.S. in order to advance the interests of Russia.
Authorities said she was directed by a “high-level” former Russian lawmaker who was among 24 Russian oligarchs and senior Russian government officials sanctioned by the Treasury Department for profiting from the country’s alleged illegal and subversive activities in the U.S. and abroad.
Butina’s charges were brought by federal prosecutors in Washington D.C. The case is not related to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, according to The Associated Press.
“Fearless Girl” has a new home.
The 4-foot bronze statue of a girl defiantly posed with her hands on her hips was unveiled outside the New York Stock Exchange on Monday, WABC reported.
Sculptor Kristen Visbal’s statue was removed Wednesday night from its Bowling Green location, the New York Daily News reported.
A marker at the old location, where Fearless Girl had stood since March 2017 as a tribute to International Women’s Day, invited visitors to plant their feet and face Wall Street’s iconic Charging Bull monument, the newspaper reported.
State Street Global Advisors of Boston installed the Fearless Girl statue to encourage corporations to put more women on their boards, WABC reported.
The installation was meant to be temporary, but the statue was so popular it became a permanent fixture, the television station reported.
The bull will follow Fearless Girl to her new location at a later date, WABC reported.
Krispy Kreme is celebrating its “Day of the Dozens” holiday Dec. 12 with a special treat.
The doughnut chain is offering a dozen original glazed doughnuts for $1 with the purchase of any dozen at regular price. The offer is only at participating locations.
“On 12/12 buy 12 get 12 more for just $1. A dozen Original Glazed doughnuts for $1 is a sweet deal,” Dave Skena, Chief Marketing Officer for Krispy Kreme Doughnuts said in a Dec. 4 news release. “Come in and enjoy!”
There is a limit of two per customer for the offer. The deal is only on Dec. 12.
Ty Dolla $ign may face more than a decade in prison after being indicted by a grand jury on drug charges.
TMZ reported that, according to court documents, the singer and rapper is facing three counts of drug charges, including two felonies.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported in September that Ty was arrested in Atlanta on charges of felony possession of cocaine, felony possession of THC and misdemeanor possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.
The 36-year-old, whose birth name is Tyrone William Griffin Jr., is from Los Angeles. In Georgia, drug laws are stricter than his home state, according to TMZ.
At the time of his arrest, Atlanta police spokeswoman Officer Stephanie Brown told the AJC officers stopped the vehicle Ty and six others were in. TMZ reported that DJ Skrillex was also in the limo. Body camera footage from the arrest shows an officer telling another officer he smelled marijuana, prompting them to get everyone out of the vehicle. Only Ty was arrested after police said they found marijuana and cocaine in his bag.
“He had no drugs on his person at all,” the singer’s lawyer, Drew Findling, told WSB in September. “Apparently there was a small amount of some drug found in the car, and they let five people walk away. And they let the international superstar go into custody.” Griffin was released on $6,000 bond.
If convicted, TMZ reported, the singer could get up to 15 years in prison. Ty has not responded to the reports.
Colorado police have stepped up a search for a Woodland Park woman who disappeared during Thanksgiving weekend, KDVR reported.
Kelsey Marie Berreth, 29, a pilot instructor and mother of a 1-year-old daughter, has not been heard from in more than two weeks, the Denver Post reported.
According to investigators, Berreth’s cellphone was pinged near Gooding, Idaho, where she has relatives, KDVR reported.
Security cameras at a Safeway store in Woodland Park recorded Berreth shopping on Thanksgiving, the television station reported. When her mother asked police three days later to conduct a welfare check on Berreth, nobody was at her residence, KDVR reported.
Berreth’s brother held a vigil in Tacoma, Washington, for his missing sibling, the Post reported. Friends and family sang “Silent Night” by candlelight, a video of the vigil showed.
"All I can ask is people continue to pray, continue to share, continue to know her face and if they see her anywhere, please, please say something," Brandon Kindle, Berreth's brother-in-law, told KDVR.
Family members have set up a Facebook page dedicated to finding Berreth.
To report information to the Woodland Park police, call (719) 687-9262
Green Monday may not be a term you are familiar with, but taking advantage of what has become the biggest online shopping day in December could brighten up your holiday season.
Today is Green Monday and retailers are offering some deep discounts on holiday gift favorites. The term Green Monday was coined by eBay in 2007 as the name for its top sales day in December. The name caught on and other retailers followed suit, posting sales on the second Monday in December.
Here are some Green Monday deals. Remember, most deals are available on Monday only.
Amazon: Green Monday is electronics day in Amazon’s 12-days of deals. Check here for the latest deals in real time.
Belk: Get an extra 30 percent off regular and sale prices and up to 70 percent off Bonus Buys, plus free shipping on all online orders.
Best Buy: Look for the “Apple Shopping Event” at Best Buy. An Apple 21.5" iMac with an Intel Core i5 (2.3GHz), 8GB memory and a 1TB hard drive is $1,099.99.
eBay: Look for 30 percent off sitewide with new deals every hour.
Calvin Klein: You can get 50 percent off sitewide plus free shipping.
JCPenney: Take 30 percent off when you spend $100 or more; take 25 percent off when you spend up to $100.
Kohl’s: Kohl’s is offering several coupons for shopping today. Click here for details.
Macy’s: Use code FRIEND to get 30 percent off.
Melissa & Doug: Use code GRNMONDAY to get buy-one-get-one-50 percent off, in addition to free shipping.
Neiman Marcus: Get a 20 percent off sale items.
Shoes.com: Get 30 percent off any order in addition to free shipping.
Target: Take 30 percent off home items, children’s clothing and adult clothing, plus discounts on toys and gaming items.
The Children's Place: Get 60 percent off their entire site online and free shipping with no minimum purchase.
Walmart: Green Monday falls on Day 10 of Walmart’s 20 Days of Deal sale. You can find a 50-inch TV for $199.99, and a Farberware 3.2-Quart Oil-Less fryer for $55.
This was a whopper of a mistake.
The “Whopper Detour,” which debuted Dec. 4 and runs through Wednesday, sends customers to McDonald’s locations, where they can order Burger King’s Whopper for 1 cent, according to Adweek.
Boyce Harvey was one customer who wanted to take advantage of the deal. But when he selected the Whopper Detour in his phone app and went to pick up his sandwich, the restaurant manager said he could not find Harvey’s order, KTRK reported.
Harvey chose another deal, but said he was stunned when he was charged $1,093.91, causing a large overdraft on his bank account, the television station reported.
Burger King officials are working to straighten out the error, KTRK reported.
A street sign in Sacramento has residents scratching their heads.
The sign at the corner of L Street and 32nd Street has a slight error, the Sacramento Bee reported.
The sign should read “32nd Street,” but is displayed as “32st,” the newspaper reported. That sparked a conversation among California residents in a post titled “Thirty-seconst Street?” on Sacramento’s subreddit page.
Posters had a field day.
A poster named yourcaviar wrote “I don’t get it? It’s the street that comes after 31nd street.”
Another poster, Johnnyvile, wrote “I think it (is) 32nd est. It the most thirty-secondest street in in Sac.”
Christmas parties, work potlucks and family get-togethers mean a lot of baking in the coming weeks.
If you’re tempted to lick the bowl after mixing cake batter or dig into that raw cookie dough, however, you need to resist.
Consuming unbaked food that is supposed to be cooked can make you sick, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Kids also can get sick from handling raw dough used for crafts, the CDC says.
Most people know that eating raw eggs can contain salmonella, which can cause illness if the eggs aren’t cooked properly.
The CDC estimates salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations and 450 deaths in the United States every year. Food is the source for about 1 million of these illnesses.
Bacteria aren’t lurking only in eggs, though. Flour, which is usually a raw product, usually isn’t treated for germs like E. coli. The CDC reported an outbreak of E. coli infections linked to raw flour made 63 people sick in 2016. Some E. coli can cause diarrhea, urinary tract infections, respiratory illness, bloodstream infections and other illnesses.
“Raw flour is a raw product, and it doesn’t go through any heat treatment before you get it,” Benjamin Chapman, an assistant professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University, told SELF Magazine in 2017. “You should treat that flour like you’re handling raw meat.”
It doesn’t mean you can never eat raw cookie dough. Dough that is commercially produced to be edible is safe.
The CDC suggests the following safe practices to avoid getting ill:
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